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Lupo’s Renovated, Reopens as The Strand Theatre and Ballroom

The new sign for The Strand | Photo by Hensley Carrasco

Lupo’s has a new look and name

Formerly known as Lupo’s the dwelling that served as a haven for the Providence music scene has undergone renovations and reopened with a classic name.

The freshly-named The Strand Ballroom and Theatre (The Strand hereafter) was originally named Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel since its first year of operation in 1975. Lupo’s had been one of the longest-standing go-to venues for live music in Rhode Island, along with its sister location The Met in Pawtucket. Lupo’s first opened at 377 Westminster St and moved to the former Peerless department store building in 1993. The current location has that served as the home for Lupo’s at their third-and final-location–since 2003–at 79

The new front entrance sign for The Strand | Photo by Hensley Carrasco

Washington St. in Providence is named The Strand Theater building (The Strand Theater hereafter), a reason as to why the name was reverted back to its original name. Lupo’s has been at the location since 2003.

The reason for the name change came from a change in the amount of ownership each partner has vested. For many years, Rich Lupo had primary partnership at the venue, but he has since reduced his ownership while still remaining involved, according to the Providence Journal.

In an interview with Do 617, Director of Booking and Promotion Jack Reich said The Strand has had renovations to almost everything in the building. The Strand will feature a “new stage, new sound [and] lights, new bathrooms, new heating and A/C, new VIP areas and…[reupholstered] balcony seats.”

“The Theatre’s renovations are extensive for both inside and outside of the building and have been made to create the ultimate event experience. There is a brand new raised stage and also previous obstructions on the ground have been removed, in order to give customers the best possible site views to the stage. The stage will have a brand new state-of-the-art sound and lighting system. Artists will have all new dressing rooms to better accommodate their visit. Patrons can enjoy upgraded mezzanine and balcony seating, remodeled VIP areas, multi leveled open room format as well as brand new restrooms and so much more.” –The Strand website

History

The Strand Theater building
The Strand Theater building | Image via cinematreasures.org

The Strand Theater originally opened on June 12, 1915 as a movie theater. During the 1930s, the building was known as the Paramount Theater, but was then regressed to its original name after having undergone restoration.

The Strand Theatre Evolution
The Strand
The Strand
Image via RI Rocks
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Strand, Providence, opening ad, 1915
Throughout the 1990s, The Strand was home to many high-profile acts including Beck, The Notorious B.I.G., Ramones, Bob Dylan, Busta Rhymes, Foo Fighters, Johnny Cash and more.

New ownership

The building will continue to receive gradual updates including a “facelift on the front of the building with a new marquee to be installed by December of 2017.” The Roxy Providence name remains in tact online, but does not have the bearing of its name on publications or the building. The former Lupo’s website redirects to the new website for The Strand.

Currently Frank Manfredi Jr. serves as a co-owner for The Strand. Prior to his title, he was a general manager for Lupo’s and Roxy Providence. He also co-owns The Rosendale, which opened in 20115. The Rosendale is around the corner from The Strand and was also previously named Rosendale, but it was instead a top hat company. A name strategically given by Manfredi Jr. because of the historical ties to the area and the specific building.

 

Hensley Carrasco

Hensley graduated from the University of Rhode Island where he was the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, the Good 5 Cent Cigar. He founded the site with hopes to add to the ever-growing digital music newsroom. Hensley generally writes about Hip-Hop, but other genres are not out of his writing spectrum. On the side, Hensley is a photographer, specializing in concert photography.

About the author

Hensley Carrasco

Hensley graduated from the University of Rhode Island where he was the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, the Good 5 Cent Cigar. He founded the site with hopes to add to the ever-growing digital music newsroom. Hensley generally writes about Hip-Hop, but other genres are not out of his writing spectrum. On the side, Hensley is a photographer, specializing in concert photography.

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